Pedestrian deaths in the United States have increased to a concerning high level in the past four decades. According to the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA), at least 7,508 people were struck and killed in the U.S. in the past year. From these numbers, this has accounted for the most pedestrian deaths since 1981.
Road safety experts have identified various factors that could be contributing to this alarming trend, including risky driving fueled by the pandemic, an increase in sales of larger vehicles like trucks, and more people moving to suburbs that may not have been designed with pedestrian safety in mind. These findings serve as a crucial reminder that road safety precautions should be taken seriously.
5 Tips for Pedestrian Safety
As a pedestrian, you cannot control the actions of drivers on the road, but you can take measures to safeguard yourself and those you care about. Adopting the following precautions can help to reduce the likelihood of pedestrian accidents.
1. Follow the Rules of the Road
As a pedestrian, following the rules of the road is essential for maintaining safety while crossing the street or walking alongside traffic. This can include obeying traffic signals, using crosswalks, and staying on sidewalks. By taking these precautions, you can minimize the risk of accidents and ensure a safe journey to your destination.
2. Exit Your Car on the Curb Side
When it comes to parking along the street, safety should always be a top priority. If you're parked on the side of the road, it's best practice to exit your vehicle on the curbside to avoid any potential hazards and danger. However, there may be times when this isn't possible. In such cases, make sure to check for any oncoming traffic before opening your door.
3. Make Eye Contact with Drivers
Crossing the street can be dangerous, but there is a simple action you can take to increase your safety. Be sure to make eye contact with drivers before stepping onto the road. A study showed that without this direct connection, over half of drivers did not stop for pedestrians at crossings. However, when pedestrians made eye contact with the driver, around 68% of drivers stopped, giving walkers a much safer path.
4. Don’t Assume Traffic Will Stop for You
As a pedestrian, it's crucial to remember that not all drivers are going to stop for you. In fact, there are several reasons why a driver might not even see you, including:
- Being under the influence
- Driving recklessly
- Not paying attention
In some cases, the driver may not even see you, as pedestrians are less visible than vehicles. Rather than risking your safety by assuming a car will come to a stop, it's important to stay alert to your surroundings and take extra care when crossing the street. By doing so, you can help ensure that you make it safely to your destination, regardless of any unexpected surprises you might encounter along the way.
5. Stay Alert
It's important to be mindful of your surroundings when walking near or crossing roads. Distractions such as staring at your phone or using earbuds can prevent you from hearing or seeing oncoming traffic.
Stay focused on the task at hand and don't let technology take away from your safety. By staying alert and aware of your surroundings, you can avoid potentially dangerous situations and arrive at your destination safely.
Contact Our Firm
As a pedestrian, it's important to be aware of your surroundings and follow safety tips to make your travels safer. However, even if you take all the right precautions, drivers may not always follow the rules of the road.
If you find yourself in a pedestrian accident, it's important to seek legal counsel. At May, Rammell & Wells, our pedestrian accident attorneys can be here to help you navigate the legal process and pursue the compensation you deserve.
Don't let a pedestrian accident leave you feeling powerless - call us today at (208) 623-8021 or contact us online.